U.S. Department of Justice
CHANNING D. PHILLIPS
Acting United States Attorney for the
District of Columbia
555 Fourth Street, NW
Washington, D.C. 20530
|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, November 9, 2009
|For Information Contact:
Williams College Professor and Policy Advisor Pleads Guilty to Multiple Fraud Schemes
WASHINGTON - Ernest Bernard Moore, an assistant professor at Williams College, visiting researcher at Yale Law School, and senior policy fellow for a Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, has pled guilty to one count each of Student Aid Fraud, Bank Fraud, and Social Security Representative Fraud, Acting U.S. Attorney Channing D. Phillips, Mary Mitchelson, Acting Inspector General for the U.S. Department of Education (DOED), Jeffrey W. Irvine, Special Agent in Charge (SAC) of the Washington Field Office of the U.S. Secret Service (USSS), Patrick OCarroll, Inspector General for the Social Security Administration (SSA), Michael McGill, SAC, Philadelphia Field Division, Office of Investigations, Office of the Inspector General (OIG), and Phillip D. Morse, Chief of the U.S. Capitol Police, announced today.
Moore, 51, of Washington, D.C. and Williamstown, Massachusetts, entered his guilty plea earlier today in U.S. District Court before the Honorable Ricardo M. Urbina. Moore is scheduled to be sentenced on February 17, 2010, and could face up to 41 months in prison under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines as a result of the guilty plea.
According to the factual proffer agreed to by Moore, in 1985, Moore enrolled at the University of Southern California under the name Ernest Bouvier-Moore, an alias. Using this false name and a Social Security number that was assigned to an associate of Moore, KM, Moore applied for and received approximately $8,000 in federal student loan funds from the U.S. Department of Education. However, Moore defaulted on those loans and, to date, Moore has never repaid any part of those funds as he was required to do by the terms of the promissory note for that loan.
In 1993, Moore created a new identity for himself by obtaining a California drivers license and a new Social Security number in the name of Bernard Glenn-Moore. In 2002, Moore used this false name and Social Security number to apply successfully for admission to Claremont Graduate University (CGU) in California to pursue a Masters degree in Public Policy. Also using this false name and Social Security number, Moore applied for and received federal student aid in four disbursements totaling $37,000 for the 2002-2003 and 2003-2004 school years. In addition, Moore used this alias to apply for and receive four private student loans from Chase Bank USA, N.A. and Citibank USA, N.A. (Citibank) totaling $79,777 in the same years. During the same time period, Moore also used the alias Bernard Moore and the same false Social Security number to open with the Stanford Federal Credit Union two Echecking Accounts and a Student Savings Account and to apply for and receive two loans totaling $7,000. In applying for admission to CGU, Moore falsely stated, among other things, that he had received a Bachelor of Science degree in 1970 from the University of Puget Sound under the name KM (when, in fact, Moores associate KM had earned that degree and Moore has never received any undergraduate degree) and that Tracy Cannady was a reference (when, in fact, that was another alias of Moores). In his applications for federal student aid, Moore falsely stated, among other things, that he had children he supported and that he had not previously defaulted on any federal student loan. In August 2004, Moore graduated from CGU, under his alias, with a Master of Arts degree in Politics.
Thereafter, again using the false name Bernard Glenn-Moore and the Social Security number he had obtained in that name, Moore was accepted into a graduate program at Howard University to pursue a Ph.D. in Political Science, and he enrolled there in the Fall of 2004. Again using this false name and Social Security number, Moore applied for and received federal student aid in seven disbursements totaling $51,351 for the 2004-2005, 2005-2006, and 2006- 2007 school years. As before, in his applications for federal student aid, Moore falsely stated, among other things, that he had an undergraduate degree, had children he supported, and had not previously defaulted on any federal student loan. Using the alias Bernard Moore and the associated Social Security number, Moore also applied for and received a student loan from Citibank in 2008 totaling $9,000. In May 2009, Moore graduated from Howard University, under his alias, with a Ph.D. in Political Science.
In 1994, Moore had created another new identity for himself by obtaining a California identification card and a new Social Security number in the name Tracy Glenn Cannady. In the summer of 2005, Moore used this false identity to apply successfully for enrollment at George Washington University (GWU) as a non-degree student. Using the same alias, Moore also applied for and received six private student loans from Bank of America and JP Morgan Chase Bank totaling $109,000 in 2006 and 2007. Moore completed no credit hours at GWU under any name.
Also in 2005, while attending Howard University, Moore began working for a Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, first as a congressional fellow and later as a legislative assistant and senior policy fellow. For purposes of his employment with Congress, Moore used his alias Bernard Glenn-Moore and the Social Security number he had obtained in that name. In September 2005, Moore used this false identity to open a checking account with the Wright Patman Congressional Federal Credit Union (WPCFCU). Also in September 2005, Moore used a different alias, Tracy Cannady, and the Social Security number he had obtained in that name to open another checking account with WPCFCU. Moore falsely stated on the application for Cannadys account that Bernard Glenn-Moore was Cannadys spouse and sponsor. Using the alias Tracy Cannady, Moore also applied for and received two loans related to Tracy Cannadys account at WPCFCU in 2005 and 2006 totaling $4,600.
From 2003 to 2009, Moore opened more than ninety credit card accounts using the aliases Tracy Cannady or Bernard Moore and the Social Security numbers he had obtained in those names. Total purchases made were at least $502,992.97, and the outstanding balances total approximately $469,099.52.
On October 23, 2001, WB, an associate of Moores, initially applied for Social Security Administration (SSA) Disability benefits at the SSA District Office in Inglewood, California. On the same date, Moore, using the name Bernard Glenn Moore and the associated Social Security number, requested to become the Representative Payee for WB and was selected as WBs Representative Payee. Both WB and Moore were living in California at this time. In June 2002, WB moved from California to Virginia, and in approximately September 2002, WB began working again, although he needed a lot of time off in 2003 and 2004. A couple of months after WB returned to work, Moore informed WB that his benefits would terminate in December 2002 due to his working. Unbeknownst to WB, Moore failed to notify SSA promptly that WB had returned to work and that WB was no longer in Moores care and custody. In fact, Moore continued to receive benefits checks on WBs behalf, but did not forward them to WB after December 2002. SSA determined that during the period January 2003 through September 2004, Moore received $13,257 in benefits on WBs behalf, but WB received no benefit from these payments.
The total loss from the aforementioned frauds is at least $821,977.97.
In announcing the guilty plea, Acting U.S. Attorney Phillips, DOED Acting Inspector General Mitchelson, USSS SAC Irvine, SSA SAC McGill, and U.S. Capitol Police Chief Morris praised the hard work of DOED OIG Special Agent Carrie Jackson, USSS Special Agents Eric A. Traceski and Kevin Rydalch, SSA OIG Special Agent Adrienne C. Messer, SSA District Office Claims Representative Judy Bura, and U.S. Capitol Police Special Agent Dennis Holland. Finally, they commended Assistant U.S. Attorney Laurel Loomis Rimon (formerly of DC, now of EDCA), who initiated the investigation, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Ellen Chubin Epstein, who is prosecuting this matter.